5. Mennola e Zerro (Spicara) / Blotched picarel and Picarel

LOCAL NAMES
Mendurella e Zarrettu

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5_Mennola-nuova

CHARACTERISTICS

Blotched Picarel and Picarel have a dark spot on the flanks. The larger are more stocky than the smaller ones and on the sides they have a  broken electric blue line.

HABITS AND CURIOSITY
They are gregarious species. They prefer sandy bottoms and sea grass meadows. They feed mainly on zooplankton that capture the prolonging mouth. They are ‘proteroginiche’ species, they are born females and grow up to be men. On the benches of the fishmongers young Picarel are sometimes called ‘little woman’.

HOW FAR DOWN DO THEY LIVE?
Picarel usually are between 15 and 70 meters, the Blotched Picarel are between 5 and 50 meters. The two species can be found, however, up to 170 meters deep.

HOW BIG DO THEY GET?
Picarel 20 cm, the Blotched picarel 23 cm.

DO THEY HAVE A MINIMUM SIZE FOR CAPTURE?
No.

HOW ARE THEY FISHED?
Mainly with bottom trawls and gillnets.

WHEN CAN THEY BE FOUND?
Summer.

NOTES ON SUSTAINABILITY AND ECOLOGY
The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) considers these species not under threat of extinction. Their biological characteristics (ability to generate abundant and short-lived progeny) also make them particularly resilient to fishing pressure.

NUTRITIONAL NOTES
The meats are discreet and sensitive.

Nutritional values ​​per 100 grams
70 kcal
Protein 14.2 g

 

PICAREL IN THE  KITCHEN

PICAREL IN GARLIC SAUCE
(Recipe created by students of the class 5A in the “San Donato” of Sassari school. The winners of the “Good for the sea good for you”)

Ingredients for 4 people
1 kg of fresh Picarel
1 kg of fresh tomatoes cut into pieces (also chopped peeled tomatoes)
50 grams of dried tomatoes, chopped
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Half a cup of vinegar
1 clove of garlic
1 red chili
Chopped parsley

Method
Clean the fish: gut and clean them from the inside.
Add salt, flour with semolina and fry in hot oil.
Prepare the tomato sauce in garlic sauce: In a pan pour the olive oil, let it heat up and add the chopped garlic. Allow to brown gently and add the chopped dried tomatoes. Leave to  flavor a few minutes and pour in the tomato pulp.
After five minutes, pour the vinegar and chili.Taste for salt.
Arrange the fried fish neatly on a platter,
pour all the sauce to cover them up.
Complete the dish with a sprinkling of chopped fresh parsley.